Lights flashed all around me. Fireflies were illuminating the night. Of course I had seen the beautiful sight before, but I wasn’t expecting to meet this wonderful scene before dawn so early in spring. I paused to take it in and to consider the lesson God had for me in this nature treasure. Jesus said, “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matt. 5:14-16).
Often when I see fireflies I remember the experience Sonya and I had as student missionaries in Japan. Our secretary and some friends from the ESL school were going to see the hotaru, and they invited us to come. Intrigued, we arrived at the park outside the city near dusk. I was surprised to see it was already packed with people. These hotaru must be something! We walked with the crowd down the wooded path. To our surprise we recognized these hotaru! They were fireflies like we had seen so many times growing up in America. But here in Japan it was a rare and special occasion that drew crowds of excited people.
Most Japanese people live packed together very tightly in cities. There is no place for the fireflies to live in those concrete jungles, so many Japanese have never seen their light.
Did you know that less than one percent of the 126 million Japanese are Christians? Seventh-day Adventists make up only about one percent of Japanese Christians. Each Japanese Seventh-day Adventist church has over a million people to reach.
God is calling for missionaries to Japan, Palawan and many other places where people live in darkness. Can you here His call? “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and His glory shall be seen upon thee. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.” (Isa. 60:1-3).
To apply as an AFM missionary, call 1-800-937-4236 or visit afmonline.org.